FLOWERY BRANCH — NFL Network draft analyst Mike Mayock could see the Falcons drafting an offensive guard with the 31st overall pick in the NFL draft, which is set for April 27-29 in Philadelphia.
“I would make a slight argument that I would be looking at that offensive line because you’ve got two guards that are aging and eligible free agency over the next (two) years,” Mayock said on his pre scouting combine conference call on Monday. “So, I would put guard in that equation as well, and I would put a guy like Forrest Lamp from Western Kentucky, would fit what Atlanta does to a T. And if they could go that way and get Forrest Lamp, I would love that.
“But as far as the defensive line and up front, at that 31, a guy like Caleb Brantley could team with Grady Jarrett. I think on the edge side as far as outside is concerned, I think you’d be looking at potentially a Solomon Thomas or Taco Charlton. So, I think their names right there, all of whom would fit into what Atlanta does scheme-wise, and knowing (general manager) Thomas (Dimitroff) and (assistant general manager) Scott (Pioli), they’re looking for tough guys with a motor. They’re also quick and explosive.”
Mayock was impressed with the Falcons’ 2016 draft class.
“I think Keanu Neal’s contribution to the team this year was not just as a really good football player, but a tough guy that set a tone, and I thought that was outstanding,” Mayock said. “I also thought that De’Vondre Campbell from Minnesota, who is a fourth-round pick, surprised a lot of people.
“I was even looking at him as a potential edge rusher because he’s so long. But he’s fast and he’s tough. And with Deion Jones, the defensive makeover that the Falcons have had in the last two years has been amazing…. it has to do with the fact that they wanted tough guys that could run, and that’s what they got.”
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